October 13, 2014 — The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) is an effective tool for deterring corporations from attempting to win or retain contracts abroad by paying bribes or presenting expensive gifts to foreign government officials or their family members. The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010 provides substantial financial rewards to insiders who blow the whistle on FCPA violations.
SEC Investigation Targets General Cable Operations In India, Thailand, Angola And Portugal
General Cable Corp., a cable manufacturer based in Kentucky, has announced an internal FCPA investigation involving the company’s businesses in India, Thailand, Angola and Portugal. The probe has already revealed that for ten years, employees of company subsidiaries in Angola and Portugal made payments to officials with government-owned utilities in Angola. The payments were made directly to the officials and indirectly through other channels, such as an agent who paid the bribes on general cable’s behalf. The company’s lawyers are assisting with another internal review of General Cable’s payments to agents in India and Thailand.
Both the SEC and the U.S. Justice Department are also investigating the matters.
The investigations have prompted General Cable to develop a screening process for hiring agents overseas. The cable manufacturer is looking into the agents’ retention agreements and the degree of due diligence that must be required of third-party investigative services retained to vet the agents. General Cable is also reviewing its policies concerning commission payments.
General Cable reportedly is hopeful that its policies will be sufficient to prevent future FCPA violations, although the company has expressed a lack of assurance that its independent agents and contractors will abide by the policies.
Whistleblowers Collaborate With The Government About FCPA Violations
While Waters & Kraus is not handling this particular FCPA case, we are representing whistleblowers in similar matters involving foreign bribery violations. If you have comparable claims against your employer or another business, contact us or call our qui tam attorneys at 855.784.0268 to learn more about our practice and how we can collaborate with the government to redress illegal foreign bribery schemes. Our experienced lawyers, such as Paul Lawrence in the firm’s Washington D.C. area office and Gary Paul in the firm’s California office, are working to level the playing field in international business operations.